Class Descriptions Session 1 • May 15-18, 2015

DeAnna Batdorff

1. INTENSIVE: Breast Health & Immunity: The River of Life    all levels
The lymphatic system is called Rasa in Sanskrit, meaning the river of life. Keeping this river flowing allows our tissues to receive nourishment, which is the secret to being and looking healthy.  Our lymph fluids allow hormones to get from one endocrine gland to another and play an important role in our reproductive health.  The lymphatic system is also called the Immune system, which we all know is important for fighting foreign invaders and staying healthy.

There will be demonstrations on how to map the lymphatic system in your body with an emphasis on breast health. There will be time for Q &A about our breasts and immunity, massage assessments for experiential learning & what tools can support change and prevent diseases.  Students will leave having a clear understanding of the lymph system and how to keep it and their breasts healthy. *Breast Checks will be continued throughout the Symposium weekends. There is strength in a river that is flowing

2. Smell This! A Clinical Approach to Aromatherapy
This class will discuss the most important essential oils for balancing each one of the systems in the body:  Lymphatic, Cardiovascular, Muscular, Skin, Skeletal, Nerves & Reproductive. We will provide information on how they take action and how hot, cold, wet or dry they are in function.

There is a lot more to aromatherapy than just smelling good…..The olfactory is the closest thing linked to the limbic brain, where we store memories & emotions.
Essential oils are actually volatile gases collected through distillation and provide a  transdermal application through the skin and are received by the bloodstream, which gives them the ability to remedy a situation quickly and with very low dosages. We will discuss Contraindications, Use in pregnancy, Dosage & Applications for use.
“Your nose knows”


Revital Carroll

1. Odissi Dance
This devotional dance form originate d in the temples of ancient India. Curvaceous movements, sculptured poses, fluid grace, and impeccable rhythm characterize this vibrant art. This class introduces fundamental principles of Odissi Dance, including chauka and tribhangi steps, and the distinct expressive quality of its eye movement and hand gestures (mudras).

2. Temple Goddess Dance
A fusion of Indian Dance and Yoga to awaken your inner Goddess! This sequence of innovative moves will enliven your body, seduce your heart, and empower you with the magnetism of a temple dancer. Come and explore new dimensions of natural beauty, confidence, and vitality.


Jolie Egert Elan

1. Beginning Botany: Plant Sex 101 beginning
One very rewarding thing about being an herbalist is gathering medicines from the wild. In order to safely and ecologically harvest medicines and foods from the wild it is imperative to identify the plant correctly. Botanists identify plants based on flowers, which are the sexual organs of plants. Learn to look at the plants through the eyes of the botanist and delve into the intimate, outrageous beauty of flowers and fruits and begin to understand how plants are botanically classified into families.

2. Herbology Plant Walk beginning/intermediate
Do you want to connect deeper to the rich and abundant plant life around you? ARe you interested in learning more about the abundance of medicinal, edible and fascinating plants growing right here at Black Oak Ranch? Join Jolie for a fun-filled fantastic adventure to the deepen your relationship with the plants around you. On this short walk we will delve deep into the stories of the plants by immersing ourselves into ecology, botany, medicine, mythology, ethnobotany and mystery. This walk is easy paced.

3. Acorn Food: The Original California Cuisine  beginning
Acorns are an abundant, sustainable, nutritious and delicious Californian food. Wild food foragers love acorns because you can not only survive on acorns but you can thrive. Come join a hands-on playshop to make acorn food and learn to identify the oak species on site. Class will also cover oak ecology, mythology, medicine, and ethnobotany. We will end with a tasting of yummy acorn food.


Lynda Emashowski

1. The Sacred Fire- Creating Sacred Space Through Conscious Fire Tending
Experience matchless fire starting and become a member of the fire devas. Establish an intimate relationship with this powerful elemental. Holding the central fire is an act of service, a source of healing and a teacher of awareness.

2.Tales of a Querandera's Apprentice  all levels
Keeping with oral tradition, experience the life and teachings of Kushu, the sole apprentice of La Dona Dora, as told by Lynda Emashowski. Please be on time so the sacred container is not interrupted.


Darcey Blue French

1. How to Treat Acute Bacterial Infections Effectively and Safely With Herbal Allies  inter/adv
How to Treat Acute Bacterial Infections Effectively and Safely With Herbal Allies
Treating acute situations requires an intensive and active herbal strategy, which includes frequency, dosing, monitoring and potential referral out to further medical care.  This class will cover the materia medica/herbal allies most effective at clearing infections, how to monitor and assess, therapeutic strategies of frequency and dosage, and when to refer out to further medical care.  Most infections can and do clear with appropriate herbal treatment, but it is best to be prepared and know when to seek assistance from other medical practitioners.  This is especially important as we come across increased frequency of antibiotic resistant strains of bacterial infections, and folks without access to insurance.  Treating infections effectively and responsibly is a great service to our communities.

2. The Sleeping Dragon: Cold Sores, Herpes, Shingles Virus - Self Care and Clinical Therapeutics, part 1  intermediate/advanced
The Herpes virus is an extremely common infection in the human population, more than 60% of the population carries the virus, and yet it is still riddled with stigma and shame in the public mind because it is partially a sexually transmitted infection.  Many people with herpes virus experience pain, alienation, and ridicule or are ashamed into secrecy. Let's open the compassionate discussion for those who live with and work with others with any form of herpes virus (HSV 1, HSV 2 and Herpes zoster (shingles). In this class we will discuss the importance of self care- including the emotional aspects of living with herpes, nutrition and diet, physical activities, herbal support for successful management/remission, and therapeutics for acute stages.   Many people may not even realize they carry the virus, and as practitioners we can offer care and support for the different manifestations and challenges- from first outbreak/diagnoses, long term management, emotional/social ramifications and shingles outbreaks.   We will go beyond standard remedies like St. Johns Wort and Lemon Balm and dive more deeply into the indications for specific medicines and therapies, including internal and topical uses of plants, flower essences for the emotional/spiritual challenges.  Participants are encouraged to share experiences, stories, remedies and strategies for dealing with all aspects of this condition.  The best  way to address and remedy the unnecessary stigma and shame is to foster open and compassionate discussion. In part 1 we will discuss acute care, therapeutics. and symptomatic relief. In part 2 we will discuss long term care, nutrition, emotional and lifestyle concerns.

3. The Sleeping Dragon: Cold Sores, Herpes, Shingles Virus - Self Care and Clinical Therapeutics, part 2    intermediate/advanced
In part 2 we will discuss long term care, nutrition, emotional and lifestyle concerns.   See part 1 for full description.

4. The Magic of Marigold (Tagetes)    all levels
Tagetes/Marigold (different than Calendula, known as pot marigold) has been used as a medicine ally in both spiritual and physical realms by the peoples of the southwest, Mexico and South America.  It is also known as Rosa Sisa, and Huacatay.   This class will cover the myriad uses of Tagetes spp as a medicine- teas, tinctures, baths, oils, and flower essences and in food!  Tagetes is an easy- to-grow addition to your garden and we’ll go over the differences between tagetes spp.  Discover this uncommonly used, powerful and versatile herbal ally that brings joy, sunshine and healing to the body, mind and soul.


Bridget Grusecki, N.D.

1. Vaginal Ecology, part 1    intermediate/advanced
Every vagina is its own complex ecosystem, influenced by a myriad of local and systemic factors.  Some of those factors include gut flora, mucosal immunity, hormonal fluctuations, the autonomic nervous system, and the body-mind axis.  In this two part class, we’ll discuss various types, characteristics and underlying causes of imbalanced vaginal flora, along with nutritional and herbal strategies to create healthier and happier vaginal terrain.

2. Vaginal Ecology, part 2    intermediate/advanced
We will continue. See part 1 for full description.

3. Living in Balance    all levels
How can we incorporate a balance of both pleasure and prudence into our self-care?  We’ll discuss the physiological impact of dietary and recreational habits, including sugar consumption, alcohol, and cannabis, and how we can potentially compensate for our indulgences through herbal and nutritional self-care strategies.


Leonie Lange

1. Medicine Plants Before, During and After Birth   beginning
The subject of this class will include general information about how safe it can be to use natural medicine during those early moments of Life, sharing concrete recipes with the latin names of each plant, contraindications of certain plants, and a moment for open questions

2. Holistic Infant Medicine    beginning
The subject of this class will include taking care of minor accidents such as burns (first and second grade), blows, cuts, bleedings etc.  Also to include cough, fevers, diarrhea,conjunctivitis, skin rushes, sinusitis,bronchitis, ear infections. We will also discuss alternatives to antibiotics and special diets according to the treatments.


Sheila LeDrew Rammon

1. Gypsy Sisters. How To Create Circles For Teens
We will go over ideas and share experiences of holding girls, ages 13-15, in Sacred Circle. We will go over a plan to create 8 weeks of two hour, once a week gatherings. This is such a powerful gathering looking to empower others to lead groups in their communities through art and sharing.

Joanne Rand

1. Singing Into Being: A Vocal Workshop With Joanne Rand, 1  all levels, no experience necessary
An experiential vocal workshop incorporating songs and chants from indigenous cultures throughout the globe, as well as Joanne's original songs and those we create together. Includes exercises in sound, listening, movement, & breath...all tools for helping to access our voice. Emphasis is on spontaneity, group dynamics, and freeing up the inner authentic voice creating a sense of  community & deep ecology.

2. Singing Into Being: A Vocal Workshop With Joanne Rand, 2   all levels, no experience necessary
This class repeats. See Singing Into Being, 1 for full description.


Shad Reinstein, L.Ac.

1. INTENSIVE: PMS And Other Simple Menstrual Problems  all levels
PMS  and other simple  menstrual problems    Painful  cramps? Emotional? Irritable ?  Problems  with your  bowels? Headaches?  short or long  menstrual  cycles?These and many other  symptoms  frequently  occur  before  or  during your  menses.  We will talk about the Chinese view on menstruation where each week  of a menstrual  cycle relates to a different  body function.  Using this  knowledge and both Chinese and western herbs, we can  develop treatment plans  that will  treat  the problems and also keep them from happening. This class does not include Infertility, Fibroids, or Endometriosis.

2. Headaches  all levels
Learn a quick Chinese Head Massage that  will make a headache  better. Where are they in your head? What  do they feel like? What  makes them feel better or worse? When do they occur? … In Chinese  Medicine the answers to these questions will lead to a different headache treatment. We will talk about what the different headaches  are  and how to treat them.


Beth Riedel

1. An Herb Walk To Begin The Symposium, Led by the Local Plants beginning/intermediate
Come meet the local plants who so willingly share their world with us. We'll discuss ways to meet and greet and identify these amazing beings, as well as the many ways they care for us, both physically and spiritually.


Ashley Ross

1. Hormonal Empowerment, part 1: Fertility Awareness and Natural Birth Control   all levels
Join us for a foundational understanding of how fertility awareness works as we learn about the Justisse Method of Fertility Awareness for avoiding or achieving pregnancy. We learn how we observe our bodies to create accurate charts; the three cycles we track to know when we’re fertile and when we’re not (ovarian, endometrial and hormonal); as well as charting protocol and notation which clarifies our understanding of the Method. We also explore how hormonal contraceptives work and how to support your body when coming off them. Your questions, curiosity and skepticism are welcome.
Please note: Part 1 is an introductory class. Typically it takes about 3 to 6 cycles of observing your own menstrual cycles to be able to use the Justisse Method correctly. The Justisse Method, a science-based fertility awareness cycle charting method, generates an accurate and detailed picture of your current health. Not only that, charts give you an ongoing, interactive, biofeedback tool for monitoring your health as we see the effects of changes we make and treatments we try.

“We as a society are allowing the one vital sign unique to women to go unmonitored. A woman’s menstrual cycle is critical to understanding her health.”    —Dr. Jerilynn Prior, Professor of Endocrinology, University of British Columbia.

2. Hormonal Empowerment, part 2: Charting Our 5th Vital Sign: An Introduction To Using Cycle Charts Diagnostically   intermediate/advanced
In part 2 we review the basics of Justisse Method menstrual cycle charting to discover the benefits of learning to create this reliable diagnostic tool. We look at typical and atypical sample charts at different stages of a woman’s life cycle to see how her cycle reflects her overall health and wellbeing, including thyroid, adrenal, cervical, uterine, nutritional and hormonal health. Come and see the profound ways charting the 5th Vital Sign benefits women and their practitioners.

3. Conscious Menopause, part 1   all levels
If you’re looking for a inspiring view of The Change - whether you’re not yet there, in the throws of it, or have passed through - come and ask your questions, share your challenges and get helpful information as we explore how to move through perimenopause consciously. In this class we discuss what it means to change - what’s lost and what’s gained, how disorienting it feels and what we can do to feel more grounded as we go through it. Something profound happens when we come together at this time of our lives to talk about the changes we experience at perimenopause - changes in how we’re feeling physically, emotionally and in our lives. Join us to experience the collective healing as the Circle provides the medicine.

4. Conscious Menopause, part 2: The Language of Symptoms   all levels
Cranky? Discouraged? Exhausted? Hot? Unsexy? Forgetful? Our body sends us subtle (and sometimes not so subtle) messages to change our ways. While they might be fabulous communicators - it would be enormously handy to have the English-to-Body dictionary! Simply and unavoidably: menopause demands that we change. In our collective pool of wisdom and irreverence, we'll explore the meaning of our symptoms, why they show up, what else they might be pointing to (not just physical) and how we might support our body, mind, heart and soul through The Change.


Amy Rouse

1. Mendocino Medicines: Materia Medica of Our Home   beginning/intermediate
We will feature five to ten plants that Amy uses personally and gathers here in Mendocino County. We will discuss where and how these plants grow, their medicines/properties, how to gather and prepare them, and how to protect and propagate them. We will see pictures and see and taste samples. Herbs will include aralia californica, indian warrior, yerba santa, redwood violet, alder, western verbena, oregon grape, etc.

2. Infused Oils and Salves   beginning
We will cover and number of different methods for infusing herbs in a variety of different carrier oils.  We'll make a salve using one of our infused oils. Which oils are best? Fresh or dried herbs? What ratios to use? Has my oil gone bad? Is my salve too thin? Is my crock pot too hot? What about essential oils? Bring your questions to this hands on class!

3. Cooking with Herbs: Beyond the Spice Rack   beginning/intermediate
We would explore things like stocks... how to prepare them and utilize a variety of herbs like codonopsis, astragalus, and medicinal mushrooms. Herbal jellos: which herbs are a tasty addition to protein rich, grass-fed gelatin? Herbs for garnishes and gamasio. Herbal pestos and nutrient dense sauces.

4. Joy to the World:  Herbs For Cultivating Joy   all levels
How do we plant seeds of joy and how to we fan the flame of happiness in our lives? Which herbal allies will we choose? Join the dialogue as we explore specific plants and adjunct therapies.


 Christa Sinadinos

1. Medicinal Plants of Northern California, part 1   advanced
Christa will offer detailed profiles of the medicinal uses of numerous plants growing throughout Northern California’s coastal and mountainous regions. She will discuss their clinical and medicinal uses, contraindications, Latin binomials, common names, and dosages. Examples of herbs that will be covered include: uva ursi & madrone (Arctostaphylos spp.), bayberry (Myrica), California poppy (Eschscholzia), cow parsnip (Heracleum), red root (Ceanthothus), silk tassel (Garrya), and as many herbs as she can squeeze into this two-part class.

2. Medicinal Plants of Northern California, part 2   advanced
We will continue. See Medicinal Plants of Northern California, part 1 for full description.

3. Herbal Support for the Digestive System Class, part 1  advanced
We will cover an overview of digestive physiology. We will then discuss the medicinal uses, contraindications, and examples of herbal demulcents, astringents, carminatives, bitter tonics, hepatics, and laxatives. Participants will learn how these herbal actions affect digestive physiology, and their therapeutic applications. With any additional time, we will cover materia medica for a few key herbs used to treat digestive tract concerns.

4. Herbal Support for the Digestive System Class, part 2   advanced
We will continue. See Herbal Support for the Digestive System Class, part 1 for full description.


Victoria Strowbridge

1. Rhythms of Life, Drum Class, 1
With beginner's mind we come together in circle.... open, respectful and humble. We will explore drum rhythms from different cultures of the African Diaspora, in a welcoming, non-competitive, connected experience. All levels of drumming are integrated, and through music, dance, story and song we will celebrate the elemental rhythms of life. Come, uplift your spirits and share the Joy!

2. Rhythms of Life, Drum Class, 2
This class repeats, see Rhythms of Life, Drum Class, 1 for full description.


Dr. Hasna Wood, LAc

Medicine from the Hive, Bee Venom Therapy, part 1    all levels
This is an introductory class in Apitherapy, specifically Bee Venom Therapy, suitable for all those interested in learning more about this ancient healing modality. It will include:

  • What is BVT?
  • How Does it Work?
  • Basic BV Components
  • Indications
  • Contraindications
  • How to Get Started
  • BVT Techniques & Guidelines
  • Training Courses

Medicine from the Hive, Bee Venom Therapy, part 2    advanced, geared for practitioners, all are welcome
This class will build upon part 1 of Medicine from the Hive.  It is preferably for practitioners or clinicians who have some level of skill and ease with the body, mind and spirit as a whole.  We will be expounding on techniques and strategies for various disorders successfully treated by BVT.

Crones 

High Crone Jill

1. Loving Life After Menopause
Crones, come share lunch with other Wise Crones. We will discuss loving life after menopause, finding joy, appreciation, and health in our Crone years. We will also discuss our part in the Maiden’s Rites of Passage Ceremony and our own Crone’s Honoring Ritual.

2. The Spirit Side of Being a Crone, part 1
This is time to reflect and share our experiences of Cronehood and our love for our Wise Crone ways and bodies. Past menopause and into memorypause, we will tell our stories. A time to make a ritual Crone Broom will follow.

3. The Spirit Side of Being A Crone, part 2
Crones, come share another lunch with other Wise Crones. We will continue our plans for the Maiden's Rites of Passage and our own Crone's Honoring Ritual.

4. Honoring the Loss of an Unborn Child
Join us for a quiet honoring of the loss of an unborn child through miscarriage or abortion.

For Young Women

Corbin Brashear

1. Needlefelted Masks, part 1   young women
We will create wearable needlefelted masks invoking a powerful aspect of ourselves that has previously been “masked” or hidden. We will explore the transformational  role that masks have played in different cultures as we  examine the ways in which we create “masks” to shroud our own true identities. Then, using the potent process of creativity called needlefelting, we will call forth a new mask that represents our most powerful self, perhaps using symbols of an animal  totem or goddess. Masks then  will be embellished with lichen, feathers, etc…   Limited to 15 students.

2. Needlefelted Masks, part 2   young women
We will continue. See Needlefelted Masks, part 1 for full description. Limited to 15 students.


Terri Jensen

1. Dragon Time for newly menstruating young women
Welcome maidens, to the Circle of Women! Join us in celebrating the beauty and strength of this phase of your life, the time of your bloods. We will explore ideas and feelings, hear stories, make things to care for ourselves and prepare for the Maiden' s Rites of Passage Ceremony to be held Sunday evening at 6:30 p.m. Any young woman who would like to go through the Maiden Ceremony must attend this class.

Mid Kids

Madalyn Berg

1. Birds Birds Birds  ages 7-11
When we look for them, birds are all around us! Do you hear a rooster in the morning, or maybe an owl at night? What are they doing? In this class we will explore some common birds of Northern California. We will learn about how they live and imagine what life is like for them. Each one of us will pick a bird and paint it on to fabric flags. Our birds will get to fly with the rest of them at the hand of their little makers.

2. Drawing Plants with Potato Stamps  ages 7-11
In this class we will practice our drawing and carving skills. Each one of us will pick a plant to study. First we will draw it, which is a quick and fun way to start getting to know the plant. Basic plant anatomy will be talked about at this time. Once we've met our plants and gotten to know their bodies, we'll carve our leaf stamps and spend the rest of the class printmaking our final project. It's about seeing the plant and building a visual relationship with it, but creativity is of course encouraged!


Michelle Keip

1. Let’s Build A Labyrinth Together!   all mid-kids

2. Peace Power Path: Aikido for Mid-Kids  ages 5-7
Aikido is the martial art of following Nature's way, the way of harmony. Come explore your hidden powers: sitting like a mountain, rolling like a river, floating like a butterfly, leaping like an antelope and more!

3. Peace Power Path: Aikido for Mid-Kids  ages 8-11
In this fun class for older mid-kids we’ll play with a variety of “hands-on” moves from the martial art of Peace, Aikido. We’ll explore both how to strengthen your Center and how to return to Center when you you feel Off. Learn how to take the energy of an attack and turn it into Peace Power.


Sheila LeDrew Rammon

1. Dandelion Dandelion
This is a class focusing just on the magic of dandelions. We will sketch and draw out our own dandelion, then paint one on a piece of wood that will be ready to hang. all while we are drinking dandelion lemonade.

2. Sacred Mandalas
We will walk and gather and collect items from nature to use to create a natural Mandala. We will create a Mandala together, and if we have time we will each work on our own unique one. We talk about the circle as a sacred symbol and we will learn to use it as a way to make offerings to the Earth and to the plants.

3. The Magic Fairy School
Come explore and share the magic of fairies. We will share our stories of our own sighting of the wee folk. Then we will have a story about Fairies as we prepare to draw and paint our ideas of what they look like using watercolor paper and liquid paints to create our Masterpieces. Then ending our magical time together we'll make our own Magic Wands and CLAIM OUR FAIRY POWER.

Early Morning Classes

Sarah K. Woll

  1. Easeful Yoga
Other Classes

Stargazer Li

1. Stargazing With Li, 1
2. Stargazing With Li, 2

Intensives

DeAnna Batdorff

  • Breast Health & Immunity The River of Life  all levels

Shad Bernstein, L.Ac.

  • PMS and Other Simple Mestruation Problems  all levels